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PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 2:17 pm 
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I think stealthed carriers not getting revealed by launching fighters is actually a very interesting (albeit powerful) mechanic which I'd like to keep, at least long term. Actually that could tie in nicely with Geoff's idea of a "noisiness" stat for weapons, fighter launch bays would have a very low "noisiness" (which makes sense for long range weapons in general).

However, as a temporary fix we could change it so launching figthers would reveal a carrier the same way as firing weapons does, if the stealthed carrier strategy really breaks the AI too badly. That's the kind of fix which could actually be done on the release branch once it's created, so it won't get into master.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 2:35 pm 
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afwbkbc wrote:
35 iirc.
This is sometimes game-breaking. We had a game when I was at center and 5 enemy empires (3 players and 2 AI) attacked me from all sides. I did pretty well and even managed to expand my borders, but suddenly one player secretly built stealth bombers and it was over for me. I needed 10 turns for scanners, he took kobuntura away from me, destroyed all my fleet in single battle, disrupted supply in most of my empire. It was OVER immediately after he unleashed stealth bombers. There must be more ways to counter stealth bombers rush than to research expensive tech. Sonetimes there's just no time for that.


That's why you build lighthouses BEFORE you get wrecked. They don't require much tech, definitely less effort than bomber fleet.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 4:56 pm 
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Voker57 wrote:
afwbkbc wrote:
35 iirc.
This is sometimes game-breaking. We had a game when I was at center and 5 enemy empires (3 players and 2 AI) attacked me from all sides. I did pretty well and even managed to expand my borders, but suddenly one player secretly built stealth bombers and it was over for me. I needed 10 turns for scanners, he took kobuntura away from me, destroyed all my fleet in single battle, disrupted supply in most of my empire. It was OVER immediately after he unleashed stealth bombers. There must be more ways to counter stealth bombers rush than to research expensive tech. Sonetimes there's just no time for that.


That's why you build lighthouses BEFORE you get wrecked. They don't require much tech, definitely less effort than bomber fleet.


Yeah, so how can I put lighthouse over ship? or deep space? I can't just sit on my planets and fap. I needed to defend myself ASAP.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 5:04 pm 
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afwbkbc wrote:

Yeah, so how can I put lighthouse over ship? or deep space? I can't just sit on my planets and fap. I needed to defend myself ASAP.


Put them on border planets, that's called defense. If you want offense, use defense to research dm/radars/tons of flak.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:09 pm 
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Voker57 wrote:
afwbkbc wrote:

Yeah, so how can I put lighthouse over ship? or deep space? I can't just sit on my planets and fap. I needed to defend myself ASAP.


Put them on border planets, that's called defense. If you want offense, use defense to research dm/radars/tons of flak.


Defense is more than sitting on own planets.
Sometimes there are multiple border planets, that's a ton of lighthouses to build.
Also, lighthouse take 10 turns to be built, so it must be planned much earlier.
So if you see stealth bombers BEFORE already having lighthouses and tons of stuff on every border planet - you're fukd. They will just fly through and destroy your supply, and you will live without supply for 10-20 years, which means lost game.
A single stealth bomber passes = lost game. Don't you think it's a bit unbalanced?


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:35 am 
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If it's necessary to build lots of lighthouses then there's a problem regardless of other effects or issues.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:07 am 
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I think all buildings that have an effect restricted only to the system (or even planet) it is built in obviously is a potentially "build everywhere" thing...


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:17 pm 
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Voker57 wrote:
Maybe teach AI to counter instead?

Absolutely, but I suspect that may be complicated and need a lot of testing (and possibly wasteful if stealth ends up changing).

MatGB wrote:
Symbiotic 15, proto 25 and Bio adaptive 35

IMO would be adequate enough for this release.

Geoff the Medio wrote:
Perhaps weapons have a "noisiness" stat...

Really like this too, hopefully possible to make this a more general effect to incorporate into other events (movement/invading).
Something to ponder in discussion Vezzra mentioned in scripting forum.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 2:02 pm 
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Playing 0.4.7 RC1

I just had my first (massive) fleet combat with fighters in it.

- Fighters are tactically awesome, love them. Before my stealth fighters came into action, I had a Chato fleet with around 10 ships, 300 dmg and 1000 structure staring at an enemy Etty fleet with around 20 ships (including a few troopers), 250 dmg (I assume that includes Etti's good pilots' bonus), 850 structure and 4 fighters that wanted my computronium in that system. We both had been there for a long time, slowly reinforcing as needed. If I attacked I lose whole fleet at second turn while they keep one or two combat ships (and then I reload last turn). Eventually I added to my fleet 4 symbiotic stealth deathray fighter carriers (i.e. 24 fighters) and won in 1 turn losing only two old organic plasma gunners. Fighters did a lot of dmg first round and soaked also a lot of dmg.

- With the addition of fighters, random targeting feels wrong to me. I had in total 4 flak cannons and none of them hit any of the 4 enemy fighters, so they were useless. Of course, in a battle against way more fighters they would have prove really useful, but then many death rays would have been mostly wasted (killing fleas with sledgehammers). I.e. the fodder cannon effect against powerful cannons is brutal. I've seen this comented previously in this thread (and also in a thread by that afbkgkslk (sp) enthusiastic guy) so I won't add more to it, except this: I read about PD, SR and LR weapons in the 0.4 design pad. That made so much sense. With the current way direct weapons are devised, it would be enough with two categories of weapons PD (or SR, currently just flaks) and LR (the rest). The targeting system would keep being random but limiting targets among the range they are, so that PD cannot aim at LR (were enemy ships stay) and LR cannot aim at SR (where enemy fighters are). Actually, that would be just like forbidding flaks against ships and rest of cannons against fighters, what may feel too restrictive or even unrealistic. In that case I would assign a constant probability (say 0.2) of PD aiming at ships and the same for big cannons targeting fighters (here I'd say 0.33), unless there are no fighters, of course. Please, don't waste your precious (to me) time answering if all this have been discussed elsewhere and it is already settled.

- In the battle log, the drop-down for figthers attacking ships shows a green (link?) "Fighter Weapon" that does not open any Pedia page nor show any pop-up.

- Also in that log drop-down, saying "Weapon: Fighter Weapon" seems redundant or non-informative, unless it is intended to differentiate interceptors, fighters and bombers by showing "<Bomber/Fighter/Interceptor> Weapon". I don't know it that's how it workd 'cause I've only used fighters up to now (see next bullet for the reason). Anyways, I would expect to see there something like "Weapon: <Bomber/Fighter/Interceptor> <Mass driver/Plasma gun/Death Ray>", so that I can see which tech is the enemy using.

- With DR weapons, fighters seem way better than bombers at taking down ships. Plus they are also better at taking down bombers, obviously. My numbers tell me that, not shown empirically. IMO that renders bombers unnecessary at mid/late game, what would be a pitty. A suggestion on this line: maybe interceptors should not be able to use plasma/DR and fighters should not be able to use DR, in the sense that if you want a big cannon you need a bigger plane (i.e., the bomber for DRs). But this may be fixed (if necessary) by balancing the dmg upgrades of fighters. Also, 30 PP for 2 bombers (hangar) and only 24 PP for 3 fighters seems unfair, although I think it is irrelevant for 1k+ PP empires.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 12:32 pm 
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Playing 0.4.7 RC1

It seems AIs are having a bad time at predicting the possible outcome of battles that involve fighters. One example:

System Rook alfa (mine):
- 1 planet with shields 35 and defense 8.
- 2x Organic Mu Ursh gunners, each with structure 30, dmg 48 and shield 5 (Diamond Armor Plating, Deflector Shield, Plasma Cannons x2)
- 4x Protoplasmic Mu Ursh carriers, each with structure 12, 2 bomber hangars and 2 launchbays.
So total fleet count 6, damage 96, 16 fighters (bombers), 107 structure and avg. shield 1.6

Attacking Cray fleet rather assorted:
- 1x Asteroid, Zortrium Armor Plating x2, Extra Fuel Tank, Defense Grid, Laser Weapon x2
- 1x Heavy Asteroid Hull, Launch Bay x2, Fighter Hangar, Improved Engine Couplings, Defense Grid, Laser Weapon x4
- 1x Heavy Asteroid, Zortrium Armor Plating, Launch Bay, Interceptor Hangar, Improved Engine Couplings, Defense Grid, Laser Weapon x4
- 1x Robotic, Zortrium Armor Plating x2, Mass Driver x2
- 1x Asteroid, Zortrium Armor Plating x2, Laser Weapon x2
Total fleet count 5, damage 144, 7 fighters, 287 structure and avg. shield 0.6

Apparently, the raw numbers show victory for the attacking fleet, but those 16 bombers with 22 damage each that can be launched all at round 1 are something to fear. The 4 attacking interceptors were doing 2 dmg each, and the 3 fighters just 5 dmg each.

Also, the AI's carriers design are quite innecifient (check bolds): 4 interceptor for only one lauchbay, 2 launchbays for just 3 fighters.

Moreover, that attacking fleet was holding at a system 1 jump away with more available ships. Totals for the whole system was:
Fleet count 11 (+1 comsat), damage 268, 10 fighters, 614 structure and avg. shield 1.0
I mean: AI could have send a quite more powerful attack but decided to use only roughly half of its power. So I guess AI really thought it was going to win.

But the final result was Cray defeated and I lost 3 of the 4 carriers (they were supposed to be stealth at 45, but AI got better sensors a few turns ago).

I have no idea how are the calculations made for the AI to decide (I guess it does not just compute the whole combat to see), but assuming it is using the fleet totals, if you transform it by counting each fighter as another ship you get:
Defending (including planet): fleet count 23, damage 456, 158 structure (including planet's shields)
Attacking: fleet count 12, damage 144, 294 structure
So that attack was crazy.


Would it be a bad idea to compute the whole combat when AI is considering to attack a human fleet/system to use the result for the final decision? (but keep it whatever it is for AI vs AI).

Anyways, as things are now, I just need to guarde my chokepoint systems with some gunner ships and many carriers to make AI destroy their own fleets. Stealth out of the equation (with Stealh carriers then it is worse). So I guess this should be addressed, it makes things too easy (that equals less excitement).


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 2:37 pm 
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Oberlus wrote:
It seems AIs are having a bad time at predicting the possible outcome of battles that involve fighters....
Hmm, right, it is less than two weeks ago that we added some code to let the AI know that its carriers would not be fully effective against planets, and as I noted there, while the treatment for AI carriers against just a planet is now pretty decent, it still has notable shortcomings if the defending planet is accompanied by defending ships, especially if those are carriers. Perhaps we can noodle through a bit more of an adjustment for that scenario in time for RC2.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 11:45 pm 
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as far as i noticed AI is having troubles fighting vs fighters... maybe just add flack ship here and there... also noticed AI still sending troop ships without any protection and with 0 chance to take planet, also making rediculous titan hull troop ship sending it to me...

otherwise nice job on fighters and in general game more smooth and less crushes ocure. well done!


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:57 am 
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Moved the posts about the AI troop ship issues to a new thread:

http://www.freeorion.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=10521


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:47 pm 
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In the latest version i noticed flak cannons are just as expensive as mass drivers. I feel as if this is a major mistake. They are useless against shields and cannot be upgraded. Please reconsider the PP cost. They should be worth less than half that of mass drivers.
If the problem is the eaxaw, then change the interaction.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:42 pm 
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SkyCore wrote:
In the latest version i noticed flak cannons are just as expensive as mass drivers. I feel as if this is a major mistake. They are useless against shields and cannot be upgraded. Please reconsider the PP cost. They should be worth less than half that of mass drivers.
At the start of the game the Flak Cannon has exactly the same firepower as the Mass Driver, with the added advantage that it is far more effective against fighters. So even comparing it to the Mass Driver the costs are justified.

However, actually the cost of the Flak Cannon needs to be balanced against fighters, as being a countermeasure against them is its primary purpose. It mustn't be too cheap, otherwise it becomes too easy to counter fighters IMO. Getting the numbers right will probably require more tweaking and balancing, but having the Flak Cannon and the Mass Driver cost the same seems like a good starting point to me.


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